Friendship…Don’t Try So Hard

I have heard it said that to have friends you must show yourself friendly.

Also, friendships develop from a variety of associations.

There are friends from work related situations.  Those who work on a team together often become great friends as they work toward a common goal.  There are few, work related advantages, that are greater than having friends that you support and that support you.


Often churches produce close bonds with fellow parishioners.  Gathering weekly in a faith community and praying for and helping your fellow members can create strong bonds of affection that is somewhat similar to family.

One of the most exciting friendships is the bond and affinity developed between people of different races and religions and often different countries.  This is, indeed, a friendship that pays remarkable dividends on several levels.  You learn about someone who is different than you in culture and religion, as well as political systems and country.


Friends can come out of nowhere.  I became friends with a former chancellor of SIU and we could not have come from more diverse backgrounds.  However, our affection for SIU was the foundation of our affiliation.

I have witnessed…and been guilty of…trying to hard to have people like me and consider me their friend.  This propensity for everyone to like me has carried over into extended family…as well.

Through trial and error I have discovered that you must not try to hard.  If friendship or familial ties are to develop…it takes two…too make it work.

Have you ever been dropped?

Have you ever been dropped by a friend?

Have you ever been dropped by a member of your family?

It hurts!

Often you reflect…what could I have done differently or what could I have done better?

I have always believed that if friendship is a 50/50 proposition….I must give at least 75%.

For many years I worked hard to develop friendships with university leaders in order to be a advocate for my, large department, as well as the entire civil service community, during my years as council president.

I quickly learned that I either clicked with a new leader…or I did not.  I was the same person with each of them….but ‘I was not all of their cup of tea.’

In one of our prayers, this past Sunday, we prayed to be a friend to others and not for the purpose of what they could do for us.

I discovered, many times, during my SIU years that university leaders seemed to warm up to me when they needed something from me.

So, worry not…if a friendship or a possible romantic hook has been placed in the water…and the prospective fish is not nibbling at the bait.


There are other people that are noticing you and thinking that they would like to be your friend…and perhaps more.

Camaraderie and friendship…and yes even romantic relationships should never have to be forced…they occur organically and with mutual interest from both parties.

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